Employment Relations: The Relevant Issues

Labor Reform

Australian labor relations represent a set of rather problematic relationships due to the fact that they are largely short-term and do not take care of the future of local employees. This is why in Tuck and Longland’s (2022) news article, elections are discussed as something borderline ineffective since they do not contribute to workplace regulation in an adequate manner. The importance of these findings stems from the fact that the local demand for compliance is hardly noticed by the government, which makes the whole system too complex to alter or improve. For instance, the issues of collective bargaining and individual employee needs remaining unsatisfied contribute to a reduced level of productivity (Tuck and Longland 2022). Thus, flexibility cannot be achieved as a result of the government’s efforts due to the inability of policymakers to address the challenges inherent in the country’s vast infrastructure.

At the same time, there is a series of background variables that have to be considered in order to contribute to flexible work patterns and enhanced labor relations. In the research article written by Morris (2022), the issue of labor reform is addressed as one of the opportunities to capitalize on the value of social and governance compliance. In turn, it would help the organization cultivate respect and alter obsolete approaches to the problems that have not been addressed in a while. Even though Tuck and Longland (2022) advocated for positive duty and extended coverage, the existing workplace regulation is unlikely to change quickly because of its inflexibility. The scope of the government should be to highlight the importance of employment relations and introduce arrangements that would be based on employee needs and aspirations. On a long-term scale, it would lead to the proper regulation of contractors across the country.

Impact of COVID-19 on Employment Relations

Employment relations became significantly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic due to the lack of protective measures that could postpone the influence on individual employees and their families. In their article, PCC Employment Lawyers (2022) took on public health issues and linked them to how the inability to adapt to the ever-changing environment could destabilize any given organization. It shows that the impact of the pandemic is too deep to be ignored at the moment, especially since Tuck and Longland (2022) hint at the inflexibility of employment relations in Australia. The unavoidable work arrangements that had to be attained over the course of the past two years can be described as the biggest contributor to inefficient employees. With numerous employees suffering from a drastic reduction of workload, it cannot be predicted if the government could be able to mediate the effects of plentiful voluntary resignations.

Across the United States, the approach to this issue remained relatively untouched as the American government stepped forward trying to promote flexibility. It was related to both policymaking and social advocacy efforts that were aimed at ceasing the resignation trend (O’Donnell, Williamson and Johnson 2022). Therefore, Australian companies could utilize the American experience as a reference to achieve a higher level of employee flexibility. At a certain point, it could relate to work arrangements where employees would be the ones responsible for assessing liabilities and risks associated with their jobs. The ability to make an informed decision when looking at employment relations should be regarded as vital in the case of the job market that has been devastated by the pandemic (O’Donnell, Williamson and Johnson 2022). Nevertheless, PCC Employment Lawyers (2022) noted that many of the existing organizations in the United States and Australia lack the flexibility to access such arrangements.

Gender Equality

Another issue that cannot be overlooked when discussing employment relations in the 21st century is workplace-based gender equality. In the article by Morni (2022), this concept is taken into consideration in an attempt to explain how gender equality could predict the positive effects of management activities. The idea for opinion leaders and business owners should be to overcome the inherent biases and focus on how the larger issues could be broken down into smaller assignments to be completed by employees. In a sense, gender equality could be hard to achieve due to the existence of business continuity challenges that lead to complex decision-making dilemmas in the field of staffing. Morni (2022) suggested that both men and women could see equality as an advantage to help them exchange skills, strengths, and valuable experience. Therefore, workplace-based gender equality should be associated with resilience and development.

An effective approach to employment relations and the role of gender equality cannot be possible without a variety of perspectives being implemented with the intention of achieving profitability. According to Boersma and Nolan (2022), the existing level of competitiveness is one of the few contributors to the organizations overcoming the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Even though there are companies that do not pursue outright gender equality, the essential task for any contemporary organization should be to incorporate the unique life experiences of the majority of employees in the company’s short- and long-term strategies (PCC Employment Lawyers 2022). It is crucial for businesses to recognize the link between flexibility and sustainability when managers are trying to mitigate the damage inflicted by the pandemic (Morris 2022). Otherwise, it would be exceptionally hard for the organization to maintain workplace diversity while paying closer attention to the issues of discrimination and labor reforms.

Labor Unions as a Moving Force

Another particular problem that currently plagues employment relations is the development of digital trade that is not accompanied by a solid organizational vision to protect employees and third-party members. In line with the information presented by Gottwald (2022), labor unions are currently involved in the process of facilitating safer data collection and exchange, but there are too many issues linked to the use of technology. This is where labor unions struggle with protecting employees since there are numerous ways to breach databases and steal sensitive data. The inability to address this crucial lack of collaboration between organizations creates a premise for wrongdoers to exploit the crucial limitations of existing technology-based instruments (Gottwald 2022). The absence of relevant regulations is an issue for labor unions because the number of employees vulnerable to breaches keeps increasing on a daily basis. O’Donnell, Williamson and Johnson (2022) presented similar evidence, hinting at the need for hybrid organizations.

The issue of protecting labor unions stems from inherent discrimination that undermines the development of technology. From gender to race, there are numerous inequalities that cannot be escaped if the employer chooses to utilize obsolete methods of data storage and exchange (De Prins 2022). In this case, the problem stems from the fact that the potential of labor unions is reduced due to the inability to respond to all updates in the market in a timely manner. Thus, employees could be exposed to the negative influence of the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic (Tuck and Longland 2022). Given that domestic trade policies in Australia and United States are still weakened by the pandemic, it can be safe to say that the transition to a digital environment cannot be sped up without disrupting employment relations.

Virtual Workplaces vs. Conventional Offices

The ultimate problem in employment relations that seems to affect developed countries is the growth of the metaverse and the popularization of virtual workplaces. Consistent with the information shared by Beioley (2022), additional steps have yet to be made in order to overcome the ethical limitations of technology and alter the employment law significantly to consider employee problems that stem from the virtual environment. Even though conventional workplaces are still active, there are quite a few opportunities for organizations to side with the benefits of hybrid working and address legal issues at the same time (De Prins 2022). Without further insight into practical applications of the metaverse and other digital workplace environments, no experts in the field will be able to take an informed stance on the issues of payment and online harassment (Boersma and Nolan). This is why employment relations are still majorly disadvantaged when it comes to technology and its application to the workplace.

At this point, there are no relevant responses as to how organizations could prevent legal and ethical conundrums from occurring. Even though labor unions are actively advocating for updated policies, the process moves forward relatively slowly (Gottwald 2022). This means that the lack of legal identity in the digital environment requires the management to review its policies to protect workers from the negative effects of the metaverse. According to Vyas (2022), the majority of national legal frameworks cannot be altered without being disrupted when it comes to including the digital element. Therefore, a virtual workplace is a distant advantage at the moment that yet has to be explored by experts in the field to decide on the most appropriate legal approaches to digitalized employment relations.


Beioley, Kate. 2022. “Metaverse vs. Employment Law: The Reality of the Virtual Workplace.” Financial Times.

Boersma, Martijn, and Justine Nolan. 2022. “Modern Slavery and the Employment Relationship: Exploring the Continuum of Exploitation.” Journal of Industrial Relations 64 (2): 165-176. doi:10.1177/00221856211069238.

De Prins, Peggy. 2022. “‘Beyond the Clash?’: Union–Management Partnership Through Social Dialogue on Sustainable HRM. Lessons from Belgium.” German Journal of Human Resource Management 36 (1): 32-52. doi:10.1177/2397002221995807.

Gottwald, Eric. 2022. “U.S., European Labor Unions Call on Trade and Technology Council to Deliver for Workers.” AFL-CIO.

Morni, Akustina. 2022. “Gender Equality and Diversity.” International Organization of Employers.

Morris, Todd. 2022. “Re-Examining Female Labor Supply Responses to the 1994 Australian Pension Reform”. SSRN Electronic Journal 20 (2): 419-445. doi:10.2139/ssrn.3706724.

O’Donnell, Michael, Sue Williamson, and Michael Johnson. 2022. “Introduction to the Themed Collection: Public Sector Employment Relations in Turbulent Times.” The Economic and Labour Relations Review 33 (1): 12-17. doi:10.1177/10353046211072543.

PCC Employment Lawyers. 2022. “Flexibility at Work – Employee Rights/ Labour Relations – Australia.” PCC Lawyers.

Tuck, John, and Anthony Longland. 2022. “Labour Reform: A Key Issue for Employers in the Federal Election.” Corrs Chambers Westgarth.

Vyas, Lina. 2022. ““New Normal” at Work in a Post-COVID World: Work-Life Balance and Labor Markets.” Policy and Society 41 (1): 155-167. doi:10.1093/polsoc/puab011.

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BusinessEssay. "Employment Relations: The Relevant Issues." April 7, 2023. https://business-essay.com/employment-relations-the-relevant-issues/.